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  1. #1
    lilmsmaggie's Avatar
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    Moving from 35mm to MF - Composition & Focus with WLF

    Well, the last roll of HP5 shot with my Minolta X-700 was a total waste.

    The shutter is not operating properly, and repairing would probably cost far more than purchasing another one; so now I've decided to focus my attention on acquiring a MF kit. I've received lots of good suggestions and recommendations from people here. One question remains:

    Learning to compose and focus with a WLF for the MF newbie. I've heard that the image is upside down and reversed, so for a newbie, I suppose this would be quite foreign and a little difficult to get use to. I wonder how many rolls of film I'd have to go through before I got the technique down.

  2. #2

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    The image is not upside down. Only left-right reversed.
    You get used to that very quickly (you realy do). So much so that you don't even notice when switching between waist level finder and other camera with prism finder; you automatically and instantly adjust. And after having used the camera with wait lever finder and think back about the images you've captured, they appear right side round before your mind's eye.

    You can, of course, practice using the finder without having to use rolls of film.

  3. #3

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    Its just reversed. You don't get into the reversed /upside down fun until large format. And, depending on how clear the WLF is, it won't take that long. I much prefer WLF and ground glass now after about a year of MF and LF. It seems strange to look into those little viewfinders.
    Anne

  4. #4
    stradibarrius's Avatar
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    Just as QG said...not upside down only left and right reversal. It's not hard to become comfortable.
    "Generalizations are made because they are generally true"
    Flicker http://www.flickr.com/photos/stradibarrius
    website: http://www.dudleyviolins.com
    Barry
    Monroe, GA

  5. #5
    Barry06GT's Avatar
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    With a prism finder, it is just like any other SLR.

    Heck, my Bronica ETRS with a 80mm lens, is smaller than my D200 with the 18-200 VR lens.
    .

  6. #6

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    I have a WLF on my Rollei and it didn't take long to get used to it.

    Jeff

  7. #7
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    What they all said: Left-Right reversal with a WLF and like a 35mm SLR with a prism.

    Steve
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  8. #8
    MattKing's Avatar
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    The image will be upside down if you have a 6x4.5 format camera, and want to shoot a vertical .

    Don't worry about this though, because for most people with a 6x4.5 camera, a prism finder is their primary finder, and they use a WLF as an accessory finder for special purposes.

    Even with a 6x4.5 verticals are quite doable, once you have familiarity with your camera.

    But generally, a WLF is better as your main finder if you shoot square.

    If you want to know what it's like getting used to the laterally reversed image, just think how easy it is to use your mirrors when you drive or ride a bike.

    Matt

  9. #9
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    I sometimes mess with the students' brains when I check out a TLR (Rolleicord) to them for the first time. I have them focus on me, then I tell them to follow me with the camera. I then quickly move to the right or left, and they'll always move the camera the wrong direction. Sort of my way of saying, "This is something really different -- go out and have some fun! Think square!"

    But you will quickly adjust and think nothing of it. At least not until you want to expose two or three images that are side-by-side on the film and you want to print them as a single image. Then you will have to rethink all that stuff!

    I just finished a roll, testing a 6x4.5 folder (a recent donation to the university). Shot some out-of-date Tech Pan. It was a challenge getting use to the orientation of the image being across the film rather than along it. A couple more rolls and I'll be use to it. Then I will also know what to tell the students who want to check it out.

    Vaughn
    At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.

  10. #10
    Krzys's Avatar
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    One thing when using a WLF, unless you are very tall, is that people photos close up will have a very low perspective and it may appear that they are towering up and falling over backwards.

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